1/22/2020

Pop-Rock-Contemporary-New Age Review: Mary Gospe-Time To Soar

Genre: Pop-Rock-Contemporary-New Age
Release Date: November 15, 2019
Label: Independent

Usually, when I cover new age-related music it is all instrumental and at times some chants and vocalizations. Mary Gospe’s Time To Soar took me right out of that little comfort zone I have been in for so long. That is by no means a negative connotation, change means growth!

One look at the album cover and you see a woman that is shining brightly with positivity and light. The mantra for the project is meant for each listener to embrace their authentic self with love, trust, joy, and freedom (Listen to “Free To Be Me”). If you are already doing that then this will just validate that purpose one step further.

Time To Soar is the message, plain and simple. Mary has a very nice voice that blends well with the music presented. Although the music is not new age, the subject matter is 100%. The music you will hear is pop, rock, and adult contemporary. It was all co-created with producer/multi-instrumentalist, David Vito Gregoli.

“We Are One” is a powerful message to the universe. The message certainly reverberates with me and hopefully, it will with everyone that takes the time to listen to this beautiful combination of lyrical prose and musical excellence. I choose that that track to be represented on my New Age Music Reviews Spotfiy Playlist (I also included the entire album for streaming here as well).

A lot of acoustic guitar playing is very good like on “I Choose Love.” This kind of accompaniment is typical of what you will hear on this recording. It is quality vocals with quality musicianship consistently. If you think about it, it has to be strong. If you want to reach an audience with your message you need a good bed of music to let ride on, and that is exactly what happens. It works well for Mary’s voice and choice of lyrics.

Just like she sings on “Pendulum,” give in to trust, surrender to love. It is simple and straight forward. However, for some of us, that kind of idea can be a task rather than a smooth transition. And that is why people like Mary and Vito are here on the planet, to help us move in that direction a little easier.

“Unity” has more rock elements than all the previous tracks. It is restrained but impactful with some nice organ to complement the electric guitar. There are no rough edges or anything that makes it a flat-out rocker, it is tastefully done to enhance Mary’s vocals and the background vocals. The track “Ride The Wave” has a political and world situation bend to it but is done nicely and gently pushes you into a more positive state of mind. Mary sings-I’m not going to succumb, I’m going “Ride The Wave” of a higher frequency and I’m going to rise above it and rise to a higher vibration. What a great message, and finally a song with those elements without any anger or negativity. It was so refreshing!

This was out of the ordinary for me in the new age realm which made me more selective and tougher from a critical stance. Mary passed with flying colors. If you are ready or if you are not, it is the Time To Soar and “Ride The Wave” to a higher vibration!

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
January 20, 2020

Founder of:

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Tracks:

01. We Are One
02. Walk Slowly
03. The Black Crow Prophecy
04. Time to Soar
05. I Choose Love
06. Free To Be Me
07. Pendulum
08. Unity
09. Ride The Wave
10. Let's Break Away
11. Live From Your Heart
12. All Is Well

 

THE ALAN PARSONS PROJECT: AMMONIA AVENUE Limited Edition Deluxe Box Set To Be Released March 27, 2020


 3CD / 1 Blu Ray / 2 X 12-Inch Vinyl Limited Edition Deluxe Box Set

**ALL PRE-ORDERS WILL BE ENTERED INTO A DRAW TO WIN ONE OF THREE DOUBLE VINYL TEST PRESSINGS **

• A DELUXE LIMITED EDITION BOXED SET OF THE CLASSIC ALBUM BY THE ALAN PARSONS PROJECT
• NEWLY REMASTERED & REMIXED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPES BY ALAN PARSONS
• FEATURING 3 CDs, 1 BLU-RAY DISC (NTSTC/ REGION FREE) & 2 x 45 RPM 12-INCH VINYL IN GATEFOLD SLEEVE
• FEATURING AN ADDITIONAL 53 BONUS TRACKS DRAWN FROM ERIC WOOLFSON’S SONGWRITING DIARIES, STUDIO SESSION OUT-TAKES AND STUNNING NEW 5.1 SURROUND SOUND & STEREO MIXES FROM THE ORIGINAL MULTI-TRACK MASTER TAPES BY ALAN PARSONS AND THE PROMOTIONAL VIDEOS OF ‘DON’T ANSWER ME’ & ‘PRIME TIME’
• INCLUDES A LAVISHLY ILLUSTRATED BOOK WITH NEW ESSAY FEATURING RECOLLECTIONS FROM ALAN PARSONS, THE WOOLFSON FAMILY, DAVID PATON & IAN BAIRNSON, A REPLICA POSTER & A REPRODUCTION PRESS KIT FOLDER.

Esoteric Recordings is proud to announce the release of a new re-mastered limited edition deluxe expanded boxed set of the classic album AMMONIA AVENUE by THE ALAN PARSONS PROJECT.

First released in February 1984, AMMONIA AVENUE was the seventh album by THE ALAN PARSONS PROJECT, the brainchild of composer, musician and manger ERIC WOOLFSON and celebrated producer and engineer ALAN PARSONS. The inspiration for the album title came from a visit Woolfson had made to the ICI Chemical plant in Billingham, England after meeting ICI chairman Sir John Harvey-Jones on a flight from New York. Upon visiting the plant, Eric Woolfson noticed a long street called Ammonia Avenue, devoid of people and trees and dominated by miles of pipes.

The album sessions featured the contribution of musicians such as Ian Bairnson (guitars), David Paton (bass), Stuart Elliott (drums) with Eric Woolfson playing keyboards and lead vocals on four of the album’s nine songs. Colin Blunstone, Chris Rainbow and Lenny Zakatek also provided lead vocals on the remaining songs. AMMONIA AVENUE would become one of the biggest selling albums for THE ALAN PARSONS PROJECT, attaining gold status in many European countries and the USA. The album featured such classic compositions as DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE, SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE and the stunning title track. AMMONIA AVENUE also spawned the hit singles ‘DON’T ANSWER ME’ (a Top Ten hit throughout Europe and in the USA) and ‘PRIME TIME’.



This deluxe edition comprises 3CDs, a Blu-Ray disc (NTSC / Region Free) and vinyl edition of a new stereo mix of AMMONIA AVENUE as two 12-inch 45rpm discs (cut at ABBEY ROAD STUDIOS). The set has been newly re-mastered from the original master tapes under the supervision of ALAN PARSONS and features an additional 53 bonus tracks drawn from ERIC WOOLFSON’s song-writing diaries, studio session out-takes and stunning new 5.1 surround sound & stereo mixes from the original multi-track master tapes by ALAN PARSONS plus the promotional videos of ‘DON’T ANSWER ME’ & ‘PRIME TIME’.

This stunning set also houses a lavish illustrated book with a new essay with unseen photos and features recollections from ALAN PARSONS, the WOOLFSON family and from musicians IAN BAIRNSON and DAVID PATON. It also includes a reproduction poster and a reproduction press kit folder. This deluxe edition of AMMONIA AVENUE is the definitive treatment of a special album.

DISC ONE: CD

“AMMONIA AVENUE” ORIGINAL STEREO MIX –
NEWLY RE-MASTERED
1. PRIME TIME (2020 RE-MASTER)
2. LET ME GO HOME (2020 RE-MASTER)
3. ONE GOOD REASON (2020 RE-MASTER)
4. SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE (2020 RE-MASTER)
5. DON’T ANSWER ME (2020 RE-MASTER)
6. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE (2020 RE-MASTER)
7. YOU DON’T BELIEVE (2020 RE-MASTER)
8. PIPELINE (2020 RE-MASTER)
9. AMMONIA AVENUE (2020 RE-MASTER)
BONUS TRACKS
10. DON’T ANSWER ME (EARLY ROUGH MIX)
11. YOU DON’T BELIEVE (DEMO)
12. SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE
(CHRIS RAINBOW VOCAL OVERDUBS)
13. SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE
(ERIC GUIDE VOCAL – ROUGH MIX)
14. YOU DON’T BELIEVE (INSTRUMENTAL TRIBUTE TO THE SHADOWS)
15. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE / SPOTLIGHT (WORK IN PROGRESS)
16. AMMONIA AVENUE PART (ERIC DEMO VOCAL)
17. AMMONIA AVENUE (ORCHESTRAL OVERDUBS)

DISC TWO: CD

ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARIES

1. PRIME TIME (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 1)
2. ONE GOOD REASON (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 1)
3. ONE GOOD REASON (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 2)
4. ONE GOOD REASON (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 3)
5. ONE GOOD REASON (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 4)
6. SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY)
7. DON’T ANSWER ME (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY)
8. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 1)
9. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 2)
10. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 3)
11. AMMONIA AVENUE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 1)
12. AMMONIA AVENUE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 2)
13. AMMONIA AVENUE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 3)
14. AMMONIA AVENUE (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY 4)
15. DON’T TAKE CHANCES WITH ME (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY)
16. YOU’LL BE SURPRISED (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY)
17. WISH I WAS MILES AWAY (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY)
18. TOBY’S THEME (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY)
19. AMELIE’S THEME (ERIC’S SONGWRITING DIARY)

DISC THREE: CD

STUDIO BONUS TRACKS

1. AMMONIA AVENUE RADIO ADVERT
2. PRIME TIME (ERIC WOOLFSON DEMO VOCAL ON ROUGH MIX)
3. PRIME TIME (MUSO’S EXPERIMENTING)
4. LET ME GO HOME (ROUGH BACKING TRACK)
5. ONE GOOD REASON
(ERIC WOOLFSON VOCAL WITH ROUGH MIX)
6. ONE GOOD REASON (ROUGH BACKING TRACK)
7. SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE (ROUGH BACKING TRACK)
8. DON’T ANSWER ME (ERIC WOOLFSON VOCAL WITH ROUGH MIX)
9. DON’T ANSWER ME (MUSO’S EXPERIMENTING)
10. DON’T ANSWER ME
(BACKING TRACK – BEFORE PHIL SPECTOR
TREATMENT AND ALTERNATIVE SAX SOLO)
11. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE
(ERIC WOOLFSON DEMO VOCAL ON ROUGH
BACKING TRACK)
12. YOU DON’T BELIEVE
(ALAN PARSONS DEMO VOCAL ON ROUGH MIX)
13. AMMONIA AVENUE
(ERIC WOOLFSON DEMO VOCAL WITH
ORCHESTRAL ROUGH MIX)
14. AMMONIA AVENUE (CHRIS RAINBOW BACKING VOCALS)
15. AMMONIA AVENUE (INSTRUMENTAL SECTION ROUGH MIX)
16. AMMONIA AVENUE (ERIC WOOLFSON PIANO TAKES)
17. AP 1 (PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED BACKING TRACK)

DISC FOUR: BLU RAY
5.1 SURROUND SOUND MIX (2019) &
HIGH RESOLUTION STEREO REMIX (2019)
BY ALAN PARSONS

1. PRIME TIME
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
2. LET ME GO HOME
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
3. ONE GOOD REASON
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
4. SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
5. DON’T ANSWER ME
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
6. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
7. YOU DON’T BELIEVE
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
8. PIPELINE
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)
9. AMMONIA AVENUE
(5.1 SURROUND MIX / NEW STEREO MIX)

THE PROMOTIONAL VIDEOS
1. DON’T ANSWER ME (PROMOTIONAL VIDEO)
2. PRIME TIME (PROMOTIONAL VIDEO)

45 rpm 12” VINYL

“AMMONIA AVENUE”
THE NEW STEREO REMIX
BY ALAN PARSONS
(2 x 45 RPM 12-INCH)

SIDE ONE
1. PRIME TIME
2. LET ME GO HOME
3. ONE GOOD REASON

SIDE TWO
1. SINCE THE LAST GOODBYE
2. DON’T ANSWER ME

SIDE THREE
1. DANCING ON A HIGHWIRE
2. YOU DON’T BELIEVE

SIDE FOUR
1. PIPELINE
2. AMMONIA AVENUE

To pre-order:
https://www.cherryred.co.uk/product/the-alan-parsons-project-ammonia-avenue-3cd-1-blu-ray-2-x-12-inch-vinyl-limited-edition-deluxe-box-set/



Press inquiries (North America): Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

1/21/2020

Rock - Metal Review: Blind Ego-Preaching To The Choir

Release Date: February 14, 2020
Label: Gentle Art of Music
This record is a blast of power and energy. From start to finish, Blind Ego’s efforts into their fourth studio album Preaching To The Choir is a force to be reckoned with. The uplifting lyrics blend seamlessly with the sounds of the guitars and drum in each track like a different chapter of a storybook. Most of the album reflects a very upbeat and positive tone which, to me, is hard to expect from a Rock, or Metal album typically. “Burning Alive,” the lead single, sounds not only the most radio-friendly but; somewhat like a Pop record because of how light it plays.

“Massive” is the ultimate starters song. You would expect to hear this song at the lead out of the announcement of the two Super Bowl LIV teams. It has so much fight and exhilaration throughout it. Not only that but, it sends the listener to a place where they feel like they are marching to their victory, to claim what is rightfully theirs.

As though one is stepping into a video game, the title track, “Preaching to the Choir” starts like walking onto a warp pad. The song quickly becomes a thrill, a rush of blood to the head, because you’ve been headbanging along with the guitar and drum patterns throughout. Then comes about, “ Burning Alive.” Leaving the past behind and watching it go up in flames, the band prepares and sets off to make a new out of the fire and ash of what they intend to leave behind; even if they catch a little singe on their way out.

“Line In The Sand” turns the album a little darker. The band is engulfed in a struggle of some kind. They don’t see a way out per se but, they establish then and there, that the things that turned them to the darkness of sorts, will not keep them from moving forward. The music keeps propelling the band, the album, and their career forward.

“Dark Paradise” keeps with the same darker underlying spirit. It acknowledges that standing alone might be the best way to move forward. The realization that sometimes you have to walk out the toughest battles alone, lays a theme for indeed, a dark paradise – a vast land now covered in blank darkness, that seemingly fits eternity. If there’s one theme that runs through this album, it’s consistency. “In Exhile” reflects that the singer has been running constantly and now has gotten to the point where those around him cannot see him, do not hear him, and do not care to look. He has grown comfortable this way, just muscling through whatever he must to get through day today.

“Heading For the Stars” become a bit lighter, in having a companion beside one another as they venture onto brighter things ahead. However, they find themselves embattled in a sea of negativity and disaster to get through. On the bright side, the singer notes, “the future is alive.” So, there must be something worth the chase after all. “Broken Land” lends itself to the same ideals of “jump into the flame” to get to where you want to be. It speaks of change, and what is to come of it on the other side. But, this broken land is wasted on them anymore because there has been so much trauma in its path.

The final track “The Pulse,” is all about anticipation. The singer reclaims what he’s been searching for in terms of peace and a purpose (or pulse). Beginning the track is just over two minutes of a lead-in of thrill and sound. But, what will come of this man’s future in taking down the one-man-army that stands in his way? In many ways, that one man is simply trying to find a way back to a sense of normalcy and to build upon that.

Gregg Keniston- Muzikman.net Staff
January 18, 2020



Tracks:
1. Massive
2. Preaching To The Choir
3. Burning Alive
4. Line In The Sand
5. Dark Paradise
6. In Exile
7. Heading For The Stars
8. Broken Land
9. The Pulse
 

1/20/2020

Is Prog Rock Really Progressive? A New Book Discussing the Progress in Progressive Rock Music


Is Prog Rock really progressive anymore? How do the current Prog bands feel about the genre and its legacy? Do they feel that there is progress in the music they perform? Different Prog artists/bands are being interviewed and answer 5 questions about the current status of the Progressive Rock and its culture. This exploratory research focuses on exploring the present and the future of a music genre that survived through the years due to its innovative nature.

While most of the previous Prog books focus on historical facts of the genre, this journalistic effort is a self-criticism of the genre through the looking glass of modern and active Prog musicians. The book starts with an introduction to Prog Rock by VIAJERO INMĂ“VIL Records (Argentina) and the rest of the material is divided into chapters that include the musicians’ answers to the following discussion themes:

1. What is progress in Progressive Rock?
2. Is Progressive Rock really progressive?
3. Accepting other music genres as progressive music
4. Next step for the progress of Progressive Rock
5. Technology and Progressive Rock

The participating Prog artists/bands that are being interviewed: Aisles, Anubis, Ant-Bee, EchoTest, Evership, Karakorum, Kotebel, Life After Mars, Light Freedom Revival, Lars Eric Mattson, Liquid Orbit, Magenta, Mouth, Process of Illumination, RTFACT, Robert Berry, Seven Impale, Soul Enema, Sproingg, Terra Collective, Time King, Wobbler, Yang.

The book was written by Vasileios Yfantis who has also authored other thematic books on Punk, Metal and music technology. Next plans for Vasileios Yfantis include the release of a Prog musical album in 2020 and a new book on melodic rock scheduled for release during the early 2021.

Product details
Paperback: 119 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 11, 2020)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1548614416
ISBN-13: 978-1548614416

Book Distribution
Paperback version: https://www.amazon.com/Prog-Rock-Really-Progressive/dp/1548614416/
E-book version:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B083RK8N59

About the author
Vasileios Yfantis has been working in the music industry for more than 20 years as a freelance music journalist. Moreover, he holds 2 Master Degrees in Information Technology and he is a Phd candidate in University of West Attica in Greece. Vasileios has presented conference papers in both Europe and Africa. The main areas of his research interests feature: Musicology, Marketing, Information Communications Technology, Digital Entertainment Industry.

Bibliography
1. V. Yfantis, “The Commercial Exploitation Of Color As A Consumer Stimulus” (Greek Edition), Createspace, 2013.
2. V. Yfantis, “The Lost Lyrics” (Greek Edition), Createspace, 2013.
3. V. Yfantis, “Punk Goes Science: The Academic Punk Bibliography”,CreateSpace, 2014.
4. V. Yfantis, “City Streets Of Europe”, Lulu, 2017.
5. V. Yfantis, “Metal Goes Science”, Createspace 2017.
6. V. Yfantis, “Disadvantaged Populations And Technology In Music”, Createspace 2017.
7. V. Yfantis, “Hip Hop Goes Science: Volume I”, Createspace 2019.

For more information about Yfantis books, check out here: https://www.amazon.com/Vasileios-Yfantis/e/B00JNNL306

For more information about Yfantis music, check out here: https://billyyfantis.bandcamp.com/

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

1/18/2020

Hard Rock/Prog Review: Magnum-The Serpent Rings

Release Date: January 17, 2020
Label:  Steamhammer

UK-based rock veterans, Magnum, are back with their 20th studio album, The Serpent Rings. Founders and driving forces, Tony Clarkin (guitars) and Bob Catley (vocals), have forged a unique melodic hard rock sound and have worked hard to evolve that sound. They’ve released studio albums every two to three years since 1979, each album borrowing from and building on the prior. Keyboardist Rick Benton joined the band in 2017, and together with a new bass player, Dennis Ward joining Lee Morris on drums, the rhythm section and the group as a whole seems invigorated. 

The sound is rich and textured with hard rock, art-rock, and prog-rock undertones. Think of Traffic meeting Queen, meeting Metallica. Magnum steers the listener in and out of these atmospheres flawlessly, creating a dramatic and cinematic sonic experience. While the landscape is rich, the driving force is the guitar work of Tony Clarkin. Fear no more the demise of the almighty guitar solo. You’ll find one on almost every track. Clarkin appears to pause to take a breath before launching into his solos. This provides a dramatic calm before the storm, and once it hits, it sounds like an army crashing through the forest on their way to storming the castle. 

Of equal importance is the attention to lyrical depth. If you listen as much to the lyrics as you do to the music, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the wisdom conveyed in these songs. The galloping opening track “Where Are You Eden?” is no exception. “A picture hangs. It’s always been there to celebrate the news. Though people talk, they don’t understand. It only serves to confuse.” 

“Not Forgiven,” chosen as the first single and lyric video, is a powerful and captivating rock song. It is somewhat formulaic, however, and there are better, more envelope-pushing tracks on the album.  
“Madman or Messiah” breaks that envelope open with inspired guitar flourishes and haunting atmospheric keyboards. Other standouts include “You Can’t Run Faster Than Bullets,” and “The Serpent Rings.” 

These are carefully crafted songs that don’t merely shout a mantra but tell stories, leaving the listener to use their imagination and relate those stories to their own lives. On The Serpent Rings, Magnum continues its consistent and impressive run of high-quality, distinctive hard rock. 

Tom Endyke - MuzikMan.net Staff
January 16, 2019

REVIEWS PROVIDED BY:
Rate the Tracks

Tracks:
01. Where Are You Eden
02. You Can’t Run Faster Than Bullets
03. Madman Or Messiah
04. The Archway Of Tears
05. Not Forgiven
06. The Serpent Rings
07. House of Kings
08. The Great Unknown
09. Man
10. The Last One On Earth
11. Crimson On The White Sand

 

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